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Various tricks of hiding smuggled cigarettes

13:54 | 04/01/2021

VCN - Reinforcing walls of passenger cars and trucks to hide cigarettes is one of the new smuggling tricks exposed by the Quang Ninh Customs enforcement unit in 2020.

Long An strictly controls anti-smuggling at end of year Long An strictly controls anti-smuggling at end of year
Quang Ninh: enhance the prevention of smuggled cigarettes Quang Ninh: enhance the prevention of smuggled cigarettes
Warning of electronic cigarette dangers Warning of electronic cigarette dangers
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Cigarettes seized by Customs Enforcement Team No. 1 in 2020

Using hydraulic lift for cigarettes smuggling

Customs Enforcement Team No. 1 (Quang Ninh Customs Department) is the core unit, actively contributing to the results of the fight against smuggling and trade fraud in Mong Cai City, Quang Ninh.

Compared to 2019, the number of cases and the value of infringing goods in 2020 fell significantly.

Many customs officers of Customs Enforcement Team No. 1 said that to transport smuggled goods, the leaders often hire people equipped with two-way radios and cell phones to watch and capture every move of the anti-smuggling force to notify teammates to move goods.

Moreover,smugglers often take advantage of dark border areas to organize the illegal cross-border transport of goods. In addition, they take advantage of border-crossings and trails to carry goods across the border, then use motorcycles and trucksto bring smuggled goods to warehouses, people's houses or gathering places at markets, bus stations and trade centres.

Of the total value of infringing goods seized by Customs Enforcement Team No. 1, cigarettes made up 60.17%.

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“In the fight against smuggling, Customs enforcement officers discovered thatsmugglers usea hydraulic system to lift or lower secret walls containing smuggled cigarettes. Not only that, in some cases, the offenders intentionally did not cooperate, so the inspection was difficult,” said Nguyen Viet Hoa, Deputy Head of Customs Enforcement Team No. 1.

One typical case is the transport of 35,200 cigarette packs, worth more than VND1.52 billion, hidden in the floor of the truck andclose to the truck's cabin, which was lifted and lowered using the hydraulic system. The offender claimed that he was hired by a man named A Nhi (Chinese man with unknown address) to carry goods from Mong Cai city to Cam Pha city. After receiving the case files, Mong Cai city police conducted an investigation and issued a decision to prosecute the case of transportation of smuggled cigarettes.

Strictly controlling key products

In 2020, regarding anti-smuggling efforts, Customs Enforcement Team No. 1 seized material evidence includinge-cigarettes.

To handle this item, Mr. Nguyen Viet Hoa proposed there should be clear regulations on e-cigarettes and heating cigarettes, as well as penalties for illegal transportation of this item. Without specific regulations, the team still applies to handle violations of e-cigarettes as with normal consumer goods.

Strict control of operating smuggled cigarettes will result in limiting smuggling Strict control of operating smuggled cigarettes will result in limiting smuggling

Mr. Nguyen Viet Hoa also added that, based on the actual situation of the area, the team has now developed and implemented a plan to combat smuggling and trade fraud in the peak period. The team has organized forces to grasp information in key areas and focused on key products such as goods infringing intellectual property rights, unsanitary goods, alcohol, cigarettes, electronics, pharmaceuticals, especially strictly controlled fireworks (when Decree No. 137/2020 / ND-CP on management and use of fireworks takes effect from January 11, 2021).

In 2020, Customs Enforcement Team No. 1 handled 83 offenders in 75 cases with infringing goods valued at VND2,863 billion; down 21.7% in the number of cases and down 20.5% in value compared to 2019.

The team transferred two cases to the Investigation Police Agency under Mong Cai City Public Securityfor criminal prosecution.

By Quang Hung/ Huyen Trang